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Thailand Travel Tips & Resources

What to Expect When Traveling to Thailand

In the heart of the Southeast Asian mainland, Thailand has become one of a leading travel destination in Asia. Thailand’s popularity among visitors is driven by the wealth of historic and cultural attractions, energetic nightlife, a tourist-friendly environment, and affordability. Thailand is a multi-ethnic nation with a population of 64 million. Known as Siam until 1939, Thailand is the only Southeast Asian country to have avoided colonialism. 

Places to Visit in Thailand

Bangkok

Bangkok

Bangkok captivates visitors with a plethora of Buddhist temples, palaces, and an exotic and vibrant street life. Bangkok is perhaps best known for its street food markets and roadside vendors. Thai food classics such as Pad Thai, (noodles with chicken or shrimp), Som Tam (papaya salad), and Tom Yum (hot and sour soup) are available just about everywhere.

Ratanakosin Island

Ratanakosin Island

Old City Bangkok, is where you will find Bangkok’s most revered historic landmarks and attractions. The regal Grand Palace is the major visitor attraction in Ratanakosin Island. Within the grounds of the Grand Palace is Wat Phra Kaew or the Temple of the Emerald Buddha. This, the most important Buddhist temple in Thailand, enshrines Phra Kaew Morakot, the Emerald Buddha, the highly revered Buddha image meticulously carved from a single block of jade.

The Capital

The Capital

The Thai Capital is known to the world as Bangkok. The locals call it Krung Thep. Actually, that just short for the real name, which consists of 169 characters, making it the longest name for a capital city in the world. The full name is: Krungthepmahanakhon Amonrattanakosin Mahinthara Yutthaya Mahadilok Phop Noppharat Ratchathani Burirom Udom Ratchaniwet Mahasathan Amonphiman Awatansathit Sakkathattiya Witsanukamprasit. Say that three times really fast!

Traveler Resources

Common Costs
Airport taxis, flat rate from Bangkok Chiang Mai Airport to city center 160 Baht
Bottle of water at a convenience store 15 Baht
Large bottle of domestic beer in restaurant 90 Baht
Admission to the National Museum in Bangkok (for non-Thais) 200 Baht
Quick Facts
Currency Baht (THB)
Capital Bangkok
Largest City Bangkok
Official Language Thai

U.S. Embassies & Travel Information

Thailand

Thailand Flag

95 Wireless Rd
Bangkok 10330, Thailand
Tel: +66 2 205 4000
Hours of Operation: M-F, 7:00AM – 4:00PM

About the Area

Thai is the national language of Thailand. However, by one count 74 languages are spoken in Thailand, including numerous Thai dialects. Ethnic and regional dialects also are spoken. Like Chinese, Thai is a tonal language. It has five tones (meaning that words or syllables with similar sounds have a different meaning depending on the high, low, rising, falling or level tone or pitch of the sound). To untrained ears the differences between tones is often very hard to detect.

Travel Tips

  • U.S. citizen tourists entering Thailand for fewer than 30 days do not require a visa. Your passport must be valid for at least six months beyond the date of your entry into Thailand. You may be asked for your onward/return ticket. If you’re planning on an extended vacation in Thailand you can apply for a 60-day tourist visa in advance at the Royal Thai Embassy
  • Thai Baht banknotes in circulation: 20 Baht, 50 Baht, 100 Baht, 500 Baht, and 1000 Baht
  • Coins are valued at 25 and 50 satangs, 1 baht, 2 baht, 5 baht, and 10 baht
  • The king is so revered in Thailand that even banknotes are handled with respect because they bear the king’s image.

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